1 January – The strength of the U.S. Armed Forces was 1,371,533 of whom 178,477 were U.S. Marines.
5 January – The 26th Marine Expeditionary Unit (MEU) deployed as part of the Bataan Expeditionary Strike Group (ESG), taking with it the first Marine Special Operations Company (MSOC) to ever be deployed.
10 January – President George W. Bush announced plans to increase the end strength size of the Army and Marine Corps. The following day, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates proposed adding 65,000 soldiers and 27,000 Marines over the next five years at a cost of $10 billion annually.
11 January – President George W. Bush presented the Medal of Honor to Cpl Jason L. Dunham’s family during a White House ceremony. Cpl Dunham, who died of wounds sustained in combat in April 2004, was not only the first Marine to receive the Nation’s highest military award for valor for Operation Iraqi Freedom, but also the first Marine to receive the award for any action since 1970.
15 January – The Marines of 3d Battalion, 4th Marines, completed an 18 day battalion-level operation in Iraq’s Al Anbar Province in an effort to disrupt insurgent activity along the Euphrates River Valley. The operation netted approximately 15 weapons and munitions caches and 9 improvised explosive devices (IEDs) that were later destroyed.
19 January – The Marine Corps changed its policy and will no longer automatically deactivate a reserve Marine who becomes pregnant on active duty. Marine Administrative Message (MarAdmin) 027/07 announced the change.
23 January – Marines with Marine Tactical Electronic Warfare Squadron 3 (VMAQ-3) began returning home to Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Cherry Point, North Carolina, after six-months in Iraq. Four days later, Marines with 7th Marines also began returning home to California after a year-long combat deployment. The unit served in the western Al Anbar Province as part of Regimental Combat Team 7 (RCT-7) and was replaced in Iraq by RCT-2 on 19 January.
24 January – Marine Medium Helicopter Squadron 262 (HMM-262) assumed responsibilities of the combat assault transportation mission for Multi-National Forces-West in Iraq. It was the first combat deployment for the squadron since Vietnam.
30 January – 1st Marine Logistics Group (1st MLG) transferred authority and responsibilities of the logistics combat element within Iraq’s Al Anbar Province to 2d MLG. 1st MLG suffered the loss of 18 Marines during the deployment
31 January – Marine Aircraft Group 29 began deploying to Iraq from MCAS New River, North Carolina.
___February – Marines from 2d Low Altitude Air Defense Battalion and a few from Marine Air Control Squadron 2’s Alpha Detachment, both stationed at MCAS Cherry Point, deployed to Iraq on 7 February. Two days later, Marines with 1st Stinger Battery from Okinawa also deployed to Iraq. Marine Wing Support Squadron 371 also headed for a tour in Iraq this month on 28 February.
2 February – The countries of Azerbaijan, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, Senegal, Tanzania and Tunisia were added to the list of designated areas of eligibility for Marines to receive the Global War on Terrorism Expeditionary Medal. It was the third time the list of eligible countries has been expanded for the medal since its introduction in 2004.
7 February – Five Marines and two sailors were killed when their Marine CH-46 Sea Knight helicopter was shot down by insurgents about 20 miles northwest of Baghdad, Iraq. It was the fifth U.S. helicopter to be shot down in the hostile country in a three week period.
7 February – The Marines of 3d Battalion, 2d Marines, returned home to Camp Lejeune, North Carolina, after completing a seven-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
9 February – The Marine Corps temporarily grounded its entire fleet of 54 MV-22 Ospreys after uncovering a problem with a computer chip that could cause the aircraft to lose control. Approximately a week later, 19 Osprey were allowed to resume operation with the rest being cleared by the end of the month.
9 February – II Marine Expeditionary Force (MEF) assumed command of Multi-National Force-West from I MEF in Iraq’s Al Anbar Province. The last of I
MEF Marines were able to return home to Camp Pendleton, California, by 15 February.
12 February – Nearly 100 Marines and sailors with 3d Marine Aircraft Wing (3d MAW) returned home to MCAS Miramar, California, following a deployment to Al Asad Air Base in Iraq.
17 February – LCpl Robert Pennington was sentenced to 14 years in the brig after pleading guilty to kidnapping and conspiracy in the shooting death of a Iraqi man in the village of Hamandiya on 26 April 2006 but due to his plea agreement, he would only have to serve eight years and received credit for time already served while awaiting trial.
27 February – The U.S. House of Representatives unanimously passed a resolution establishing 25 March as National Medal of Honor day. It was also approved by the Senate three days later.
1 March – Cpl Trent D. Thomas was arraigned for a second time on charges of kidnapping and murder for his role in the shooting death of an Iraqi man in April 2006. Cpl Thomas had rejected a plea deal with prosecutors last month.
4 March – Marines with the Marine Corps Forces Special Operations Command (MarSoc) opened fire, killing at least 8 Afghan civilians in eastern Afghanistan. Different versions of the events lead to tensions between U.S forces and the local population, with the Marine unit being expelled from the country later in the month by the Army general in charge. The incident also sparked an investigation into whether the Marines responded with appropriate force to an ambush or if they had opened fire without provocation.
10 March – Benis M. Frank, the Marine Corps’ former chief historian, who was also responsible for the creation of the Corps’ oral history program, died of congestive heart failure. A veteran of World War II and the Korean War, Mr. Frank became a civilian employee of the Marine Corps in 1961 and retired in 1997. He was laid to rest in Arlington National Cemetery.
17 March – Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron 167 returned to MCAS New River, North Carolina, following a seven-month deployment to Iraq. Several days later on 26 March, Marines with the Yuma-based Marine Attack Squadron 211 also returned home. Both squadrons had been based at Al Asad Air Base during their deployment to Iraq.
18 March – The main party of Marines from Hawaii-based 1st Battalion, 3d Marines, began departing for its second seven-month deployment to the Al Anbar Province in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. Three days later, Marines with 2d Battalion, 3d Marines and Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 363, began arriving home from Iraq.
19 March – This date marked the 4th anniversary of the start of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
21 March – Major William D. Chesarek, Jr., was awarded the British Distinguished Flying Cross (DFC) in a ceremony at Buckingham Palace, London, by Queen Elizabeth II. Major Chesarek was serving as an exchange office with the British 847 Naval Air Squadron and was deployed to Iraq with that unit. His actions on 10 June 2006 supporting British ground troops lead to him becoming the first American since World War II to receive a British DFC.
23 March – Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 266 (VMM-266) was officially stood up at MCAS New River. The squadron was the third operational MV-22 Osprey to be stood up as part of the Marine Corps aim to transition from the CH-46E to the Osprey.
23 March – Marines with Marine Wing Support Group 17 and 9th Engineer Support Battalion returned to Okinawa, Japan, following deployments in support of
Operation Iraqi Freedom.
31 March – Marine All-Weather Fighter Attack Squadron 332 (VMFA(AW)-332) transitioned to cadre status. Although the squadron was disbanded and the
personnel and equipment re-assigned, cadre status allowed the squadron’s colors to be maintained for a possible re-activation in the near to mid-future.
1 April – The Marine Corps officially stood up the Wounded Warriors Regiment whose mission was to help injured Marines through their recovery and an often difficult bureaucracy. The regiment is headquartered at Marine Corps Base (MCB) Quantico, Virginia, but has two established battalions, one on the west coast and another on the east coast.
1 April – Marines were banned from getting large tattoos on their lower arms and legs. MarAdmin 198/07, released in March, outlined the new policy which was aimed at reigning in tattooing and holding onto Marine Corps standards.
2 April – All charges were dropped against a sergeant accused of killing five civilians in Haditha, Iraq, on 19 November 2005 during raids on several houses that left 24 Iraqis dead. He was granted testimonial immunity. Over the next several days, at least three officers and several other enlisted men were offered immunity for their testimony in the cases pending against three enlisted men and four officers.
6 April – Raymond G. “Jerry” Murphy, a Korean War Medal of Honor recipient, passed away at the age of 77. Mr. Murphy was a 23-year-old 2d lieutenant when he was credited with saving numerous Marines’ lives, despite himself being wounded, on 3 February 1953 during Operation Clambake near Ungok, South Korea. He left the Marine Corps Reserve in 1959 and spent most of his working life helping veterans at the New Mexico Veterans Administration.
18 April – The Marine Corps formally reactivated the 1st Battalion, 9th Marines, in a ceremony at Camp Lejeune. The reactivation was originally slated for 2005 but was delayed due to manpower and equipment issues. The battalion had been deactivated in September 1994.
20 April – The Marine Security Guard Battalion was re-designated to Marine Corps Embassy Security Command during a small ceremony at MCB Quantico. The name change was done to more accurately reflect the organization’s structure and capabilities.
25 April – SgtMaj Carlton W. Kent assumed the position as the 16th Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps, replacing SgtMaj John L. Estrada. SgjMaj Estrada later retired from the Marine Corps in June 2007 after 34 years of service.
26 April – All Marine Message 024/07 (ALMAR 024/07) announced the 2006 recipient of the Leftwich Trophy for Outstanding Leadership. Capt Matthew W. Tracy from 2d Battalion, 3d Marines, was selected to receive the coveted award, which was presented to him on 11 October 2007.
__April – Marines serving with numerous Marine Corps units returned to the U.S. throughout the month of April from Iraq, including the 4th Civil Affairs Group and 2d Light Armored Reconnaissance Battalion on 2 April; 2d Battalion, 3d Marines, on 8-10 April; Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 263 on 19 April; 2d Tank Battalion and 3d Reconnaissance Battalion on 24 April; and 4th Combat Engineer Battalion, 1st Tank Battalion, and 3d Assault Amphibian Battalion on
28-29 April. Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 461 also returned to the U.S. from a deployment to the Horn of Africa on 26 April.
4 May – The Marine Corps Reserve promoted its first female reservist to brigadier general during a ceremony in Arlington, Virginia. Col Tracy Garrett, who was the acting commanding general for 4th Marine Logistics Group in New Orleans, Louisiana, was slated to take over as head of Marine Corps Mobilization Command in Kansas City, Missouri, following her promotion.
5 May – BGen Edwin H. Simmons, former director of the Marine Corps’ History and Museums Division, well-respected author and historian, passed away at the age of 85. BGen Simmons served in the Marine Corps during World War II, Korea, and Vietnam and retired after 36 years in uniform only to serve another 17 years as a civil servant. He was buried with full military honors in Arlington National Cemetery, Arlington, Virginia, on 25 July 2007.
8 May – The Article 32 hearing for the first of four officers facing charges for failing to properly investigate the 19 November 2005 killings of over two dozen Iraqi citizens in Haditha, Iraq, was convened at Camp Pendleton. Capt Randy W. Stone, a military lawyer, faced dereliction of duty charges. Three weeks later, on 30 May, the highest ranking officer facing charges, LtCol Jeffrey Chessani, also was in court for an Article 32 hearing. LtCol Chessani was the commanding officer of 3d Battalion, 1st Marines, at the time of the slayings and also under investigation for failing to properly look into the actions of the Marines.
17 May – Commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen James Conway, rebuked Army officials for offering premature apologies for the actions of special operations Marines after they were struck by a car bomb in Afghanistan on 4 March. The Marines’ reaction to the attack was still under investigation by the Naval Criminal Investigative Service prompting Gen Conway to state, “As has historically been the case, a service member under investigation or undergoing trial is innocent until proven guilty. And too much in the terms of declaration of guilt and apologies has already been said.” Lawyers for a few of the Marines under investigation also submitted formal letters to the Army requesting its’ leadership cease making prejudicial statements.
19 May – Approximately 300 Marines from 1st Battalion, 6th Marines, returned home to Camp Lejeune following a nine-month deployment to Iraq’s Al Anbar Province. The unit lost 12 members due to insurgency violence and faced having the deployment extended from its scheduled seven months to nine.
30 May – The 15th MEU returned to Camp Pendleton following an extended nine-month deployment, five of which were spent in Iraq. The Marines had moved into Iraq in November 2006 in support of counterinsurgency operations in the Al Anbar Province and were extended twice while in Iraq.
4 June – This date marked the 65th Anniversary of the World War II Battle of Midway.
4 June – Marine Aerial Refueler Transport Squadron 152 (VMGR-152) received its first KC-130J Super Hercules aircraft. The new planes, nine total over an
18-month period, were to replace older KC-130 models that date back to the early 1960s
15 June – MarAdmin 364/07 announced the awarding of the Navy Unit Commendation to 1st Battalion, 3d Marines, for service from 26 December 2005 to 31 May 2006 during Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.
18 June – Japan voted to change the name of the volcanic island, Iwo Jima, to reflect the original name given to it by its inhabitants. The new name, Iwo To, is written with the same characters and has the same meaning of “Sulfur Island” but is different when spoken. The World War II battle for Iwo Jima cost nearly 7,000 American lives and the island remained under U.S. occupation until 1968.
24 June – Charles W. Lindberg, the last survivor of the Marines who raised the first U.S. flag over Iwo Jima during World War II, died at the age of 86. Mr. Lindberg was awarded a Silver Star for bravery during the 1945 battle for the volcanic island as well as a Purple Heart. In his later years, he spent his time trying to raise awareness of the first Iwo Jima flag raising which is often overshadowed by the more famous second flag raising that was immortalized by AP photographer Joe Rosenthal.
28 June – President George W. Bush nominated Navy Admiral Michael Mullen to be chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff and Marine Gen James E. Cartwright to serve as vice chairman. Originally, Gen Peter Pace was expected to be re-nominated for another two-year term as chairman but Secretary of Defense Robert Gates instead recommended Adm Mullen after concluding that Gen Pace’s Senate confirmation process would be too contentious.
29 June – U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Special Operations Command’s (MarSOC) Foreign Military Training Unit was redesignated the Marine Special Operations Advisor Group.
5 July – The fifth Sergeant Major of the Marine Corps, SgtMaj Joseph Dailey, passed away at the age of 90 in Newport Beach, California. SgtMaj Dailey
enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1941 and saw combat in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam. He served in the top enlisted spot from 1 August 1969 until his retirement on 31 January 1973.
5-8 July – Marines with Battalion Landing Team 3d Battalion, 1st Marines, conducted Operation China Shop II in the Iraqi province of Al Anbar. The Marines conducted census surveys and carried out weapon sweeps.
9 July – The court-martial for Cpl Trent D. Thomas began at Camp Pendleton. Cpl Thomas was the first to be tried in connection with the 26 April 2006 killing of an unarmed Iraqi man in Hamandiya, Iraq. He was found guilty of kidnapping and conspiracy but acquitted of premeditated murder on 18 July. He was sentenced to a reduction in rank and a bad-conduct discharge but no prison time. Only days later on 24 July, the court-martials for the last two Marines still facing charges in the killing also got under way.
11 July – Col Christopher Conlin, who presided over a preliminary hearing for LtCol Jeffrey R. Chessani, recommended that the former battalion commander be court-martialed on charges of dereliction of duty and violating general orders for failing to investigate allegations against his men that they killed Iraqi civilians in Haditha, Iraq, on 19 November 2005.
13 July – The Marine Corps reactivated 2d Battalion, 9th Marines, in a ceremony at Camp Lejeune. The unit absorbed the men assigned to the Anti-Terrorism Battalion that was deactivated the same day and was part of the Marine Corps’ long-range plans to increase its end strength numbers.
14 July – Regimental Combat Team 2 began Operation Mawtini in Iraqi towns along the Euphrates River long used as insurgent sanctuaries. The operation
involved more than 9,000 U.S. and Iraqi troops and was aimed at establishing control in remote areas of western Al Anbar.
16 July – Commandant of the Marine Corps, Gen James Conway, signed ALMAR 034/07 which set new martial arts requirements. The new rules required tens of thousands of Marines to complete the first level in the training sequence, the Tan belt qualifications, by the end of 2007. The ALMAR also increased the requirements for everyone in combat arms fields.
25 July – ALMAR 035/07 tightened the rules for wearing the Marine Corps Combat Utility Uniform, better known as Cammies, off bases as well as reiterating when and where certain variations of the uniform were acceptable.
1 August – Wounded Warrior Battalion-West officially uncased its colors during a ceremony at Camp Pendleton. The battalion, one of two under the new Wounded Warrior Regiment based at MCB Quantico, was established to provide oversight and care for recovering Marines west of the Mississippi River.
1 August – Cpl Marshall Magincalda was found guilty of conspiracy to murder in the 26 April 2006 killing of an unarmed Iraqi man in Hamandiya, Iraq, but was acquitted of the more serious charge of premeditated murder. He was sentenced to time served for the 448 days he had spent in a Navy brig awaiting trial and was reduced in rank to private. The very next day, squad leader Sgt Lawrence G. Hutchins III, was convicted by a different jury of numerous charges in connection with the same case, the most serious being unpremeditated murder. He was sentenced to 15 years in prison, a reduction in rank to private, and a dishonorable discharge.
7 August – Two Marines who pleaded guilty to taking part in the 26 April 2006 killing of an unarmed Iraqi man in Hamandiya, Iraq, were ordered released by LtGen James N. Mattis, commanding general of Marine Corps Forces Central Command. Pvts Tyler A. Jackson and Jerry E. Shumate, Jr., each served about nine months of the 21-month sentences imposed under a plea bargain. Three days later, Pvt Robert Pennington, the only Marine still incarcerated after pleading guilty in the case, was the also granted early release.
9 August – LtGen James N. Mattis dismissed all charges against LCpl Justin Sharratt. LCpl Sharratt was one of four enlisted Marines who originally faced murder and other charges in the deaths of several Iraqi citizens in Haditha on 19 November 2005. Charges were also dismissed against a military lawyer, Capt Randy W. Stone, who was accused of not properly investigating the slayings.
11 August – Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 134, based in San Diego, California, was placed in cadre status. One step above deactivation, cadre status maintains the name of the squadron on the Marine Corps rolls but there is no aircraft, equipment, or personnel assigned to the unit.
16 August – A former Marine sergeant was charged in federal court in Los Angeles, California, for his alleged role in the killing of eight unarmed Iraqi prisoners during the intense November 2004 battle for Fallujah. Four days later, the Marine Corps announced it was charging another Marine in connection with the same incident. Both men were members Company K, 3d Battalion, 1st Marines.
16 August – Marines with 3d Battalion, 6th Marines, began returning to North Carolina following a seven-month deployment in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. About a week later, on 22 August, 2d Battalion, 7th Marines, also began arriving home in California from Iraq .
22 August – A San Diego Marine Corps Recruit Depot (MCRD) drill instructor, was arraigned on 244 counts of abusing recruits. Sgt Jerrod M. Glass stood accused of striking almost every member of his 60-man platoon (Platoon 2167, H Company), some repeatedly, over the period of 23 December 2006 to 10 February 2007 as well of other abuses. Four officers who oversaw Sgt Glass at the time were relieved of duty and two other drill instructors also faced special court-martials related to the case.
31 August – Gen James E. Cartwright was sworn in as the eighth vice chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) by Defense Secretary, Robert M. Gates, at a ceremony held at the Pentagon. Gen Cartwright had been serving as vice chairman since his confirmation by the Senate on 3 August, but his official ceremony was delayed until his family could be in attendance. It was the first time in history that two Marine officers held the top two military spots since Gen Peter Pace was still serving as chairman of the JCS.
___September – A Naval Criminal Investigative Service (NCIS) investigation report into the actions of a Marine special operations company pulled from Afghanistan in March 2007 was forwarded to Marine Corps Forces Central Command for review.
4 September – Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron 773 deployed to the Al Anbar Province in Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
5 September – The Marine Corps announced that three officers received administrative sanctions in connection with the killing of Iraqi civilians in Haditha, Iraq, in November 2005 because their actions in the aftermath of the incident did not meet the high standards expected of senior leadership. MajGen Richard A. Huck, former commanding general of 2d Marine Division; Col Stephen W. Davis, former commanding officer of Regimental Combat Team 2; and Col
Robert G. Sokoloski, former chief of staff of 2d Marine Division, received letters of censure from the Secretary of the Navy that were filed in their official
7 September – Marines with 2d Battalion, 10th Marines, returned home to Camp Lejeune after spending seven months in Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom.
10 September – 1stLt Andrew Grayson, one of four officers to face charges for failing to properly investigate the November 2005 Haditha incident, rejected a plea deal that would dismiss the charges he faced in exchange for an admission that he covered up the killings of Iraqi civilians. Two days later, another of the four officers, Capt Lucas McConnell, was fully exonerated. Capt McConnell was the second of the four to have all charges dropped.
14 September – A formal transfer of authority ceremony was held in Al Taqaddum, Iraq, as 6th Engineer Support Battalion (6th ESB) assumed the responsibilities of out-going 8th ESB. Ten days later, members of 8th ESB began arriving home at Camp Lejeune.
17 September – Marine Medium Tiltrotor Squadron 263 (VMM-263) became the first combat squadron to deploy with the MV-22 Osprey aircraft. VMM-263
departed from MCAS New River for a seven-month deployment to Iraq in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom. The first of the Ospreys landed in Iraq in early October.
23 September – About 200 Marines with Marine Light Attack Helicopter Squadron 269 (HMLA-269) returned to MCAS New River from Iraq.
24 September – The 3d Marine Division celebrated the unit’s 65th anniversary. It was activated in 1942 in San Diego, California, and later moved to its’ current home on Okinawa in 1956.
30 September – Marines with Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 232 (VMFA-232), who had deployed with the USS Nimitz for seven months, returned home to California. The squadron logged approximately 2,400 flight hours and participated in both Operation Iraqi Freedom in Iraq and Operation Enduring Freedom in Afghanistan.
___October – Numerous Marine Corps units returned home following deployments to Iraq during the month of October. Among those returning were Marine
Wing Support Squadron 271 on 1 October; 5th Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company (ANGLICO) on 2 October; 1st Battalion, 12th Marines, on 3 October; 2d Battalion, 5th Marines, on 8 October; Marine Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Squadron Two on 14 October; 1st Battalion, 3d Marines on 16 October; and 2d Battalion, 6th Marines, on 22 October.
1 October – Gen Peter Pace, the first Marine to serve as chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS), retired from the Marine Corps after more than 40 years in uniform. For the past six years, he served as vice-chairman and then chairman of the JCS.
1 October – Africa Command (AfriCom) stood up as the newest regionally focused major Department of Defense command. The command was created to
help tackle diplomatic initiatives, humanitarian aid, and counter-terrorism operations in all of Africa except Egypt, which remained under the control of U.S. Central Command.
4 October – LtCol Paul Ware, the investigating official, recommended that SSgt Frank Wuterich be tried on negligent homicide instead of the more serious charge of unpremeditated homicide in the deaths of Iraqi civilians. SSgt Wuterich was the squad leader who allegedly directed his Marines in an assault in Haditha on 19 November 2005 that left over two dozen Iraqis dead.
10 October – LtGen James N. Mattis ordered that a court of inquiry be convened to investigate the actions of a Marine Corps special operations company on 4 March 2007 in Afghanistan which left several civilians dead and wounded. The court of inquiry is a rarely convened high-level administrative investigatory
body and not a criminal proceeding. To date, no Marine had been criminally charged in connection with the incident.
11 October – The U.S. Naval Academy agreed to temporarily return to South Korea (initially for a two year period) a Korean flag captured by Marines during a brief 1871 battle. The giant banner had been displayed in the Naval Academy museum since undergoing preservation treatments in 1913. The 1871 Korean Campaign occurred when U.S. officials sought to open what was then Corea to trade and resulted in six Marines receiving the Medal of Honor.
19 October – LtGen James N. Mattis dismissed murder and negligent homicide charges against LCpl Stephen Tatum but ordered him to general court-martial on lesser charges of involuntary manslaughter, reckless endangerment and aggravated assault stemming from the November 2005 Haditha incident. LtGen Mattis also ordered criminal charges to proceed against the former battalion commander of 3d Battalion, 4th Marines, LtCol Jeffrey R. Chessani, for failing to accurately report and investigate the same incident.
2 November – Marines assigned to Task Force National Capital Region deployed to Iraq for seven months. Made up of more than 200 Marines, nearly all volunteers, from various commands in the Washington, D.C., area, the unit was formed in June in order to give Marines a chance to deploy from usually non-deployable duty stations such as MCB Quantico.
10 November – This date marked the Marine Corps 232nd Birthday.
13 November – This date marked the 25th Anniversary of the Vietnam Veterans Memorial in Washington D.C. Known as “The Wall,” the long, black granite
memorial engraved with the names of more than 58,000 war dead was designed by architect Maya Lin and was dedicated on 13 November 1982.
14 November – Drill Instructor Sgt Jerrod Glass was convicted at court-martial of abusing recruits. He was sentenced the next day to six months in the brig, reduction in rank to private, and a bad conduct discharge. Nearly two dozen recruits testified during the trial in regard to incidents of physical contact with Sgt Glass.
17 November – Marines and sailors with the 13th MEU returned home to Camp Pendleton following a seven-month deployment to the Persian Gulf with the Bonhomme Richard ESG that included a ground combat tour in Iraq.
17 November – Marines with 1st Marine Special Operations Battalion (1st MSOB), U.S. Marine Corps Forces, Special Operations Command, returned to Camp Pendleton following the unit’s historic first deployment. While deployed, 1st MSOB conducted special operations in the Philippines and Afghanistan.
19 November – 6 December – The 22d MEU from the Kearsarge ESG, Marines of the 3d Marine Expeditionary Brigade based out of Okinawa, and the 11th MEU from the Tarawa ESG participated in Operation Sea Angel II. Marines helped deliver tons of supplies and humanitarian aid to Bangladesh following the devastating Cyclone Sidr that occurred on 15 November.
21-22 November – Approximately 650 Marines with 3d Battalion, 7th Marines, arrived home in California. While deployed in support of Operation Iraqi Freedom, the Marines operated in and around Ramadi, the capital of the Iraqi western Al Anbar Province.
22 November – Col Jefferson J. DeBlanc, Sr., a World War II Ace and Medal of Honor recipient, passed away in Lafayette, Louisiana, due to complications from pneumonia at the age of 86. Col DeBlanc was a 21-year-old lieutenant on 31 January 1943 when he shot down five Japanese aircraft over the Guadalcanal area before being forced to eject while wounded from his severely damaged airplane.
27 November – LtGen Thomas H. Miller, Jr., who has been called the father of STOVL (short take-off and vertical landing) aviation in the Marine Corps, passed away at his home in Arlington, Virginia, at the age of 84 after a battle with cancer. LtGen Miller was a naval aviator who fought in World War II, Korea, and Vietnam.
28 November – The special court of inquiry ordered in October to be held in regards to Marines allegedly killing unarmed Afghan civilians in March 2007 was postponed until early in 2008 to allow both sides additional time to prepare.
13 December – A Marine reservist, LCpl Delano Holmes, was found guilty of negligent homicide in the death of an Iraqi soldier. The pair were standing watch together at a guard post in Fallujah on 31 December 2006 when LCpl Holmes stabbed Pvt Munther Jasem Muhammed Hassin to death. Despite claiming self-defense, LCpl Holmes was convicted and sentenced to time-served, reduction in rank to private, and a bad-conduct discharge. He had already spent 10-months in the brig while awaiting trial.
14 December – A second San Diego drill instructor in the case of recruit abuse of Platoon 2167, H Company, over the period of 23 December 2006 to 10 February 2007 was found guilty of failing to report abuses committed by others. Sgt Brian Wendel was found not guilty of the most serious charges of abuse, maltreatment, and making false statements, but was convicted of disobeying an order and dereliction of duty. Sgt Wendel was reprimanded and reduced in rank but avoided jail time. A third drill instructor was still awaiting trial in the case.
16 December – Marines with Marine Fighter Attack Squadron 251 (VMFA-251) began arriving home at MCAS Beaufort, South Carolina, following a six-month deployment on board the USS Enterprise. While deployed, VMFA-251 flew missions in support of U.S. coalition forces on the ground in Afghanistan and Iraq.
31 December – The strength of the U.S. Armed Forces was 1,409,897 of whom 186,342 were U.S. Marines.
USMC History Division